By Neto Baptiste
Former West Indies, Leeward Islands and national cricketer, Winston Benjamin, has taken the sport’s local governing body to task over what he has suggested is a non-existent development programme.
The former Leeward Islands coach who called into the Good Morning Jojo Sports Show to address head of the local cricket association, Leon Rodney, said the body must invest in young players by way of a structured development programme in an effort to prepare them for the next level.
“Maybe that is what we need to change in order to get them guys to perform whenever they go to represent the Leewards. Don’t piggyback on other people’s things because this has been going on now for eons. Don’t you think it’s time that we stop the talking and do something?” he said.
At the time, Rodney was addressing concerns raised over the state of cricket at the youth level given that the country had only one player selected to the ongoing CWI preparatory camp for 56 under-19 players here in Antigua.
He acknowledged the need for a more robust programme but said the association continues to support similar initiative.
“At the present moment we do not have a direct development programme but we have been supporting different persons, we have been supporting different [programmes] but we do not have a direct development programme at the moment and that’s no secret. There are other areas where we have done quite a bit and we are not given any kudos for it, so sometimes things balance out so you can’t just hit things when it’s bad but don’t give kudos when it’s good,” Rodney said.
The CWI camp will serve as part of the selection process for the final squad that will compete in the ICC’s 2022 instalment of the Under-19 World Cup slated for the Caribbean.